Just because you're off your feet, it doesn't mean that you aren't able to work your legs. In fact, many athletes and bodybuilders do leg workouts lying down to build stability in their core and lower body, including their glutes and quads.
Your thigh muscles, also known as your hip adductors and abductors, are often a neglected part of your leg day routine. But it's important to strengthen these muscles because they help stabilize your hips while standing, walking, running and even lifting weights.
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You can do this 20-minute inner thigh workout lying down to zero in on those hip-stabilizing muscles. These lying-down leg moves also work the smaller muscles of your glutes and core, which aren't as easy to target.
Do this lying-down workout several times a week to improve your lower-body strength and stability. It includes single-leg exercises to ensure that you have equal strength on both sides, which is crucial for injury prevention. Best of all, you'll tone up your legs without having to stand up!
Check out more of our 20-minute workouts here — we’ve got something for everyone.
1. Single-Leg Glute Bridge
- Lie on your back with your hands down by your side, knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift one leg off the ground, keeping your knee bent at 90 degrees.
- Press your upper back into the floor and lift your hips off the floor, forming a diagonal line from the top of your knees to your shoulders. Squeeze your glutes at the top and keep your stabilizing foot firmly on the ground.
- Lower your hips back down to the starting position. Switch legs after you finish the reps.
Make this exercise harder by elevating your foot on a six-inch box and adding an isometric hold at the top for three to five seconds. To regress this exercise, place both feet on the ground and perform a glute bridge with both feet on the ground.
2. Leg Raise
- Lie on your back with your palms down on the floor by your sides and your legs extended in front of you. Lift your legs six inches off the ground.
- Keeping your foot flexed, lift your right leg off the ground toward the ceiling. Once your leg is vertical, slowly lower it back to the starting position. Your legs should never touch the ground.
- Continue to alternate legs.
Take this exercise to the next level by flutter kicking your legs; just make sure to keep them six inches above the ground as you work. To regress this exercise, place your hands under your lower back for support, bend your legs at 90 degrees and extend them out in front of you.
3. Side-Lying Leg Lift
- Lie on your right side with your right forearm on the ground and your right shoulder directly above your elbow. Stack your left hip over your right, making sure to keep them square throughout the movement.
- Pointing your toes forward, lift your top leg high toward the ceiling.
- Keep the tension in your left leg as you bring it down to the starting position.
- Repeat until you finish your reps, then switch sides.
For more support, add a cushion like a rolled-up towel or blanket under your hips. To make this exercise more challenging, come up to a side plank on your stabilizing hand as you do leg lifts.
4. Inner Thigh Leg Lift
- Lie on your right side with your right forearm on the ground and your right shoulder directly above your elbow. Cross your left leg over your right and place your left foot flat on the ground, just outside of your right leg. Your right leg should be extended. Place your left hand on the ground in front of you.
- Maintaining this position, raise your right leg high and then lower it back down to the ground. Keep your bottom foot flexed throughout the movement to fire up your inner thigh.
- Continue to raise your leg at a rapid pace until you have finished your reps. Then, roll onto your left side and repeat.
Add an ankle weight to your working leg to make this move harder.